NABOKV-L post 0023253, Thu, 9 Aug 2012 17:49:00 -0700

Subject
Re: lepitoperological miracle?
Date
Body
I think we can unravel it.  The emergent butterfly was obviously a swallowtail, which is yellow with black stripes or black with yellow stripes, depending on the species, AND esp. in the females (and a bit in the males) obvious blue spangled across the inner margins of the hindwings.  The Black Swallowtails are well known for parsley being their larval foodplants so that makes it likely that the butterfly was a Black Swallowtail.... now depending on what part of the country you live in there are several species and then there are the Tiger Swallowtails (yellow with black stripes of which there are also several species) but they usually larval-feed on various trees and shrubs, not parsley.  Monarchs feel only on Milkweed so its unlikely your beast was a Monarch. 


As to the long time in the crysalis, butterflies have been around since late Dinosaur times; so they have had a lot of time to adjust to "weathering conditions".....  Some can sit in that crysalis up to seven years!  So, that's a fascinating story--  and the above probably helps out in understanding it.  Lucky you had the lid off that box.... cool!


sorry I had to write this is a hurry!
Dr. Kurt Johnson 



________________________________
From: Mary H. Efremov <mbutterfly549@AOL.COM>
To: NABOKV-L@LISTSERV.UCSB.EDU
Sent: Thursday, August 9, 2012 10:37 AM
Subject: Re: [NABOKV-L] lepitoperological miracle?


monarch have no blue color.not suer how the miracle occurred but it presents a possible for plot for transmigration of DNA etc



-----Original Message-----
From: Carolyn Kunin <chaiselongue@ATT.NET>
To: NABOKV-L <NABOKV-L@LISTSERV.UCSB.EDU>
Sent: Thu, Aug 9, 2012 10:31 am
Subject: [NABOKV-L] lepitoperological miracle?


Dear Dr Johnson,

You remind me that I actually have an interesting lepidopterological question to ask.  Years ago I found a Monarch caterpillar on some milkweed and brought him home. I put him on a potted parsley plant and draped him with gauze to protect him from birds and he proceeded like Topsy to grow and grow.

I was fortunatley at home when he began to construct his cocoon and I watched the process with fascination. When he had completely entered the pupal stage (and what a gorgeous pupa he was, diaphanous green with raised black and gold dots) I did the unforgiveable - I accidentally jostled the pot. My little pupa shuddered violently and lay still. I knew I had murdered him, and in fact when the proscribed 21 days of metamorphosis had passed, he remained a little mummy.

I mourned him and put him in a tiny box that jewelers give you and left him where I could admire him from time to time. One day I came home to find a marvelous black and yellow (and blue too?)  striped butterfly plastered against a window - how did that get into the house? I looked at the little box, which thank fortune I had left open that day, and the shattered case told the tale.

It was the anniversary of the day my little sweetheart should have emerged the year before. What do you make of that? I will swear on anything you like that this is not fabricated or embroidered in the slightest. 
Carolyn


On Aug 8, 2012, at 1:33 PM, Kurt Johnson wrote:

Just a note that the Spring 2012 Issue of The News of the Lepidopterists Society had a delayed tribute to Dr. John C. Downey, who transitioned in 2005.  It points out his role as a central character in the Nabokov saga.  Downey was one of the pioneer scientists of Blues and had some fascinating contacts/ run-in's with Nabokov that have been recorded in both Boyd and Pyle and Johnson and Coates.  The tribute points out that Downey was a major professor and influence on both Kurt Johnson and Naomi Pierce who went on not only to be major systematists of the Lycaenidae (and Blues in particular) but also turned out to further explore, unravel and chronicle the Nabokov lepidoptery saga.  This was capped of course with the co-authored paper of 11 persons working with Naomi Pierce that used DNA analysis to confirm Nabokov's biogeographic hypotheses (published in 2011).  Many of these persons are participating in the current ongoing work by Steve Blackwell
and Kurt Johnson for another major volume on Nabokov's science and art.

So, I wanted people to know about the tribute article to John C. Downey.

Dr. Kurt Johnson



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